The Developmental Psychobiology Lab’s (DPB lab) research focuses on early life influences on development. During pregnancy and the early postnatal years, environmental factors are more likely to exert programming, or long-term, effects on the child’s development. Our lab’s research includes three lines: first, influences of prenatal maternal mental wellbeing on children’s health and behavioural development; second, development of the physiological stress system in children, and its relation to behavioural and emotional regulation and physical health. And third, the development of the intestinal microbiota and its relation to children’s health, behavioural and emotion regulation, and physiological stress system.


Latest news
  • Online colloquium at the University of North Carolina
    Carolina de Weerth was invited to give an online colloquium on 29th October to faculty and students at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (USA). The talk was called ‘Early life: stress, gut bacteria, and mother milk’. The public…
  • End of the NinO study
    In the Spring of 2020 we started planning the NinO studie, with the aim of studying the role of contact and proximity during infants’ first months in Dutch daycare centres. We discussed our protocol extensively with different daycare providers…
  • The effects of the COVID‑19 lockdown on pregnant women
    Twice as many pregnant women experienced clinical levels of anxiety and depression during the first COVID-19 lockdown in the Netherlands compared to earlier years. The women experienced many worries about the new and unknown virus, diminished social contacts and…
  • Conference Stay in Touch: A Lifetime of Intimacy
    On the 5th of October, Dr. Stefania Vacaru was invited to give a lecture in Amsterdam about early child social relations. The conference’s theme was Intimacy throughout the lifespan, and Stefania started with the first talk of the day…